4) Bing Crosby
From the early 30s to the early 50s, no singer had the star power of Bing Crosby. Crosby’s musical talent was well-known. Not only he was a frequent guest on others shows and constantly in demand on record request programs, he had a long line of his own programs including stints hosting the Kraft Music Hall, Philco Radio Time, the Chestfield Program, General Motors, Woodbury, and Ford. His consistent signature song was, “When the Blue of the Nigh.” Crosby’s popularity also made his films a no-brainer for adaptation to radio.
He was a legendary and charismatic crooner who partnered often with Bob Hope on Hope’s programs, Crosby’s programs, and on Command Performance. Christmas time was particularly strong for Crosby as his singing of Adeste Fideles along with a selection of sacred and secular Christmas songs.
As much of an institution as Crosby was at Christmas, the other 364 days a year, he remained a consistently popular voice throughout radio’s golden age who set a standard that other singers aimed to follow.
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